The browser you are using is not supported by this website. All versions of Internet Explorer are no longer supported, either by us or Microsoft (read more here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/windows/end-of-ie-support).

Please use a modern browser to fully experience our website, such as the newest versions of Edge, Chrome, Firefox or Safari etc.

Catarina Kinnvall

Catarina Kinnvall

Assistant Head of Department Coordination of Research | Professor

Catarina Kinnvall

Misrecognition and the Indian State: The Desire for Sovereign Agency

Author

  • Catarina Kinnvall
  • Ted Svensson

Summary, in English

A focus on misrecognition allows us to move between levels of analysis in a holistic fashion. If misrecognition works through the conscious and the unconscious we can account for the many overlapping insecurities and securities believed to exist at the individual, group, or state level – and thus felt. These insecurities also present themselves through the categories used to describe them and the policies through which they become materialised, technologised, and depoliticised, often by closing down discursive boundaries. Lacan’s concepts of desire, real and lack are here important for understanding the impossibility of recognising something that cannot be recognised. Hence, a perspective that takes misrecognition not as an end result or as failed attempts to reformulate the exceptional as the normal, has the potential to rethink the political subject. In empirical terms, the article discusses how this process of misrecognition has been shaped in the Indian context of postcolonial state formation and articulations of sovereignty. We show how the Indian state is being rethought, restructured, and reimagined through Hindu nationalism and how the concept of misrecognition accounts for desires for sovereign agency and group cohesiveness, but also for resistance to various reimaginations of the Indian state.

Department/s

  • Department of Political Science

Publishing year

2018

Language

English

Pages

902-921

Publication/Series

Review of International Studies

Volume

44

Issue

5

Document type

Journal article

Publisher

Cambridge University Press

Topic

  • Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
  • Globalization Studies

Keywords

  • misrecognition
  • sovereignty
  • security
  • psychoanalysis
  • India

Status

Published

ISBN/ISSN/Other

  • ISSN: 1469-9044